Greenpoint’s first-ever alcohol-free bar Getaway (158 Green St.) opened Tuesday night as an alternative social space for people who may not be keen on consuming alcohol while having a night out on the town.
Similar alcohol-free bars have opened across the U.S. from Maine to Illinois recently including the NYC pop-up Listen Bar, which had a successful pop-up in Williamsburg last year and is currently crowdfunding for its first ‘booze-free’ permanent location with nearly $23,000 raised so far out of its $25,000 goal.
Getaway co-owner Sam Thonis was a bit ahead of the trend when the inspiration for Getaway’s concept came to him while he witnessed a relative of his go sober a couple of years ago. Thonis’s entrepreneurial gears were already turning at the time as he sought to open a business in Greenpoint where he’s lived for nine years. He and co-owner Regina Dellea cite a visit to ABC Kitchen in Manhattan as further inspiration as they took an interest in the restaurant’s homemade soda menu.
The drink menu at Getaway currently features 10 thoughtfully crafted mixed drinks for $13 such as The paper train made of lemon juice, tobacco syrup, vanilla and San Pellegrino chinotto; a selection espresso drinks and bottled sodas such as the Fever Tree Ginger Ale for $4 are on the lower priced side of the menu.
A food menu of small sharable plates is in the works and will draw from local purveyors with dishes such as an Acme smoked fish plate, cookies, baked goods from Ovenly, bread from She Wolf Bakery and other snacks to accompany the drinks. “One thing I’ve been really conscious of is making sure that it feels like a bar and not a coffee shop or restaurant…so from the beginning I never wanted to do a full food menu,” Thonis said.
While some people who identify as non-drinkers or occasional drinkers still consume alcohol in beverages such as kombucha, the approach at Getaway is to cater to the most discerning alcohol restrictions. “We’re going zero percent alcohol; we’re not doing kombuchas or low-ABV beers; our bitters are all non-alcoholic bitters,” he said. “So we’re really trying to stick to the zero percent thing for now because I know a lot of people that don’t drink, they don’t want that temptation, they don’t want to be around it, they don’t want to worry that maybe something is seeking into their drink.”
Getaway is open Tues. – Sun. from 5 p.m. – 12 a.m.